Joining a sorority allows members to create fun memories and grow as women. But, sorority women are students first. Panhellenic organizations put academic achievement at the top of their priority lists, and every chapter has its own way of helping members succeed in school.
Lean on Chapter Members
One of the greatest resources women have when they join a sorority is each other. It is likely someone else in the chapter has taken or will be taking the same classes as you. Using your sisters as a resource to ask questions, advice about professors or as a study buddy is the best resource you have.
When you connect with other sisters, you have a new resource, but you can also keep each other accountable for study and taking exams.
Use Chapter Provided Resources
Many chapters use different resources to help members succeed.
- Is there a “study closet” where sisters donate textbooks, study guides and other materials when a class is finished?
- Is there a Google Sheet with contacts or a tutoring system that matches members who need help with other chapter members who can provide assistance?
- Does your chapter maintain a list of alumnae who are willing to tutor?
- Do you have a buddy system that pairs up sisters to give them study help and accountability?
If your chapter has these steps in place, sign up for these programs early before you run into any snags in class. If these aren’t offered, consider talking to the chapter officer responsible for academic success and offer these are ideas.
Taking Advantage of Chapter Study Opportunities
Many chapters set up quiet, well-lit study zones in the house and may stock them with school supplies and snacks. Some designate a “study table” at a campus library or other locations on campus. In many chapters, sisters are encouraged to complete study hours and these locations offer the perfect spot for sisters to study together.
In addition to being able to study together, these study hours offers a chance for members to help one another and to always have someone to talk to during a well-earned study break. These opportunities help members reach their academic goals.
Other chapters have events to make studying fun and celebrate academic success. Chapters might host events where sisters meet at their chapter house, order pizzas and hit the books. They may even hold study date nights with fraternities or other organizations on campus.
Recognizing Academic Achievement
After all of the hard work sorority women put in to succeed academically, chapter scholarship chairs work to recognize and encourage members with certificates, bulletin “brag” boards and contests to encourage and celebrate good grades, like prizes for GPAs over a certain mark or for the most recorded study hours. Many also reward sisters who have raised their GPA by a certain amount, recognizing that sometimes the hard work it took to improve grades might otherwise have gone under the radar.
In all this, consider what resources you have to offer. If you know another member is stressed and struggling in school, reach out to help. Whether it’s quizzing her on facts for a test, bringing her something to eat so she doesn’t have to interrupt productive study time or offering a shoulder to cry on – that support may be the encouragement she needs to succeed.